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News From the Food and Drug Administration
July 19, 2016

Inadequate Food Recall Policies

JAMA. 2016;316(3):260. doi:10.1001/jama.2016.8812

The FDA’s procedures to recall contaminated or misbranded food are inadequate, sometimes leaving dangerous products on the market for weeks or months, according to preliminary findings from an audit by the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Inspector General (OIG).

The findings, reported in early June, are a follow-up to a 2011 OIG report that also found the FDA’s food recall program lacking because the agency didn’t have the authority to require food recalls and it often didn’t follow its own procedures to have potentially harmful foods taken off the market. However, the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011 subsequently granted that authority.

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